ASTONish Emerge: is for start up creative businesses or individuals looking to develop their practice and skills. 

The EMERGE cohort is for start up creative businesses is for people who have a small business or freelance practice.  Perhaps you have had a few “paid gigs” and want to know how to make that more sustainable?  Perhaps you need guidance with elements of your business plan? 


1 x evening Orientation event (required for ALL participants)

All selected applicants will be invited to an evening where they will consider their own objectives and the evaluation team will be able to take “baseline” measurements of the skills, knowledge and attitude levels – so that the impact of the various interventions can then be assessed after the programme. We will strive to do that in a variety of ways that will bring out rich data.  


ASTONish: Emerge will cover the key tenets needed to underpin a successful creative business:  ASTONish Emerge is based on the Metapod Be Effective’ sessions which in the past have helped over 420 creative businesses providing advice on business planning, finance and fundraising, getting to market and practical legal and employment matters. 


What really makes ASTONish Emerge distinctive and relevant to the creative business sector is that they’re led not by accountants and business managers, but by creative entrepreneurs who have built their own successful businesses.  The atmosphere of sharing successes and lessons – and the relationships formed by the learning group itself provides an empowering launch pad for emerging creatives to form their business.


Description of Proposed Programme

Each of the days below will be led by Helga Henry (whose information is provided below) or another skilled facilitators in this sector and will feature contributions from individuals who are successful within the creative industries. The focus is not on ‘chalk and talk’ but on exercises and scenarios that encourage the participants to dynamically address the issues raised.

The programme, as it is currently delivered, will comprise 6 sessions running on consecutive weeks, usually on the same day each week. A typical ASTONish Emerge training day includes an introduction to the topic with group exercises, speakers with inspiring and relevant input on the subject, a lunch at which delegates and speakers can network and then exercises applying lessons to the participant’s business with practical “real” action plans to kick start the planning process.


Course dates

Orientation – Wednesday 3rd May 2017 6.00 – 8.00pm – Birmingham Hippodrome

 6 x Day sessions

Wednesday 10th May 

Wednesday 17th May 

Wednesday 24th May 



Wednesday 14th June 

Wednesday 21st June 

Wednesday 28th June 

Sessions will run from 9.30 – 16:30 at Aston Hall


Presentation Coaching and Mentoring delivered by Rebbecca Hemmings Strawberry Words - BOTH COHORTS

Presentation Skills/ Eloquence to build confidence and presentation skills.  This would take place after some of the initial training programme so participants will have had time to work out their key messages and objectives.

A lack of confidence and self-esteem are often the underlying reasons why most people fail to communicate well in formal and informal settings, particularly for those from disadvantaged backgrounds. This can lead to vital missed opportunities. The programme of work will focus on:

  1. Developing confidence, self-esteem and mindset
  2. Improving eloquence and use of the English Language
  3.  Overcoming nerves
  4. Working towards presenting in front of an audience

These would be complemented by 1-2-1 sessions where Rebecca will work with individuals on creating strategies to work on their individual goals

Dates will be set for these sessions early in the programme and 1-2-1 session booked directly with Rebbecca Hemmings at mutually convenient times.